Frequently Asked Questions about Vibration Injury claims
1. What is hand arm vibration syndrome?
Hand arm vibration syndrome is an industrial injury affecting people whose work has involved extended use of vibrating power tools such as pneumatic drills, chain saws, riveting tools, fettling tools and grinders. It used to be known as vibration white finger, referring to one of the main symptoms of the condition, but it was changed to hand arm vibration syndrome to reflect the other symptoms it can cause.
A variety of tools can cause a vibration injury. If you think you have developed the disease you should seek advice from lawyers who have experience of conducting compensation claims for a vibration injury.
2. What are the symptoms of hand arm vibration syndrome?
Common symptoms of vibration injuries include:
• Whitening of the skin on your fingers
• A cold sensation in your fingers
• Numbness in your fingertips
• Tingling in your fingers
If you start experiencing any of these symptoms, you should speak to your GP as soon as possible. Symptoms may not develop immediately after using vibrating machinery but may come on over time. They can be long-lasting and painful. Hand arm vibration syndrome can make lifting objects and more precise finger movements, such as writing, difficult. If symptoms are ignored, the condition can be disabling.
3. Am I at risk of developing a vibration injury?
Workers in the construction, engineering, agricultural and mining industries are most at risk of developing a vibration injury. People who use vibrating power tools or machines such as chainsaws, concrete breakers, grinders, hammer drills, hedge trimmers, mowers, pedestal grinders, pneumatic drills and sanders for long periods of time are also at risk.
4. Who is liable for your vibration injury?
These kinds of injuries caused by working with vibrating tools are deemed, where the work was being carried out prior to 1976, to be outside the scope of any knowledge of risk that the employer could reasonably have been expected to have, and so compensation will not generally be awarded for them.
Where a person has sustained vibration white finger caused by working with vibrating power tools after 1976, however, a claim for compensation may prove successful. Different dates may apply depending on the size and knowledge of the risk of a particular employer.
The mining industry, in particular, has given rise to tens of thousands of claims. For anyone who was exposed to excessive vibration from tools used in the course of coal mining, the relevant date is 1975.
5. How can I make a vibration injury claim?
If you have developed hand vibration syndrome as a result of using power tools at work, you may be entitled to make a vibration injury claim. Our vibration injury lawyers can review your case and provide you with legal advice on making a claim. Contact Thompsons today for more information about vibration injury claims.
6. How can I fund a vibration injury claim?
Thompsons Solicitors will provide advice on the different funding options available for vibration injury claims. If you are not a trade union member and would like to make a vibration injury claim, one of the most common funding options we recommend is a conditional fee agreement, more commonly known as a 'no win, no fee' claim. For more information on ways to pay, visit our fees and payment page.
Trade union members get free legal advice and representation for these types of claims as part of their union scheme. Trade union members also keep 100 per cent of the compensation secured.
7. How long does it take to secure hand arm vibration syndrome compensation?
The length of time it takes to secure compensation depends on the individual case. Straightforward vibration injury claims can be resolved in months, but it could take years to resolve more complicated claims. Rest assured, our specialist lawyers will do all they can to secure compensation in the shortest time possible.
8. How much compensation will I get for a vibration injury claim?
The amount of compensation you could expect to be awarded for a vibration injury claim varies depending on a variety of factors, including the severity of the pain and whether it has affected your ability to work.
The damages awarded for a hand arm vibration syndrome claim can range from a few thousand pounds to more than £100,000. Whatever the details of your case, our industrial disease lawyers will endeavour to secure the maximum amount of compensation for you in the shortest time possible.
If you would like to make a vibration injury claim, start the process by completing our free no-obligation claim form, requesting a callback or by calling 0800 0 224 224 today.